J/Boat Rudder Bearing Replacement - SailNet Community

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Old 01-14-2009
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J/Boat Rudder Bearing Replacement

OK, I have entirely too much lateral movement in my rudder (3/4") and I am 99.9% positive this means I'll be tackling / paying for at least a lower rudder bearing replacement, possibly even an upper. This is a common and known issue on these boats.

Who has done this before (or had it done)? I've read most of the related material online. I'm am specifically looking for comments on J/Boats.

1. Which bearing manuf did you choose (Jeffa or Edson) and why?
2. How much did the bearing part cost?
3. How much was the total job?
4. What were the gotchas, or other 'I didn't anticipate THAT' learnings?

I understand that most of these require the fiberglassing of the new bearing...which is not something I am going to tackle. So I am trying to educate myself enough to the point where I can specifiy parts and general process to the yard.

Thanks.
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Old 01-14-2009
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There's info at these sites:
J40 Rudder Bearings
Eos Rudder Bearing Replacement

Paul L
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Old 01-14-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_L View Post
There's info at these sites:
J40 Rudder Bearings
Eos Rudder Bearing Replacement

Paul L
Thanks for the links. Good info. I've read both of these.

Is there any other information out there? Experiences from other owners who have gone through this process?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason3317 View Post
Thanks for the links. Good info. I've read both of these.

Is there any other information out there? Experiences from other owners who have gone through this process?
Where are you located? I'd find a yard that has done a bunch locally and talk to them about it. In areas that have a lot of J/Boats, there is usually a yard that has good experience. With as much slop as you describe, you will probably be replacing a bearing. You don't say if you are seeing the slop at the top or bottom or what year your J is. It is probably at the lower bearing and needs to be replaced. I dropped mine for inspection a few months ago and had the yard re-mount my lower bearing. Did not replace it.

Paul L
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_L View Post
Where are you located? I'd find a yard that has done a bunch locally and talk to them about it. In areas that have a lot of J/Boats, there is usually a yard that has good experience. With as much slop as you describe, you will probably be replacing a bearing. You don't say if you are seeing the slop at the top or bottom or what year your J is. It is probably at the lower bearing and needs to be replaced. I dropped mine for inspection a few months ago and had the yard re-mount my lower bearing. Did not replace it.

Paul L
I'm in the upper-middle Chesapeake. The only test I've completed was to move the rudder lateraly (side-side)...which it moves 3/4"-1". It is a 1988 model year.
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Old 01-14-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason3317 View Post
I'm in the upper-middle Chesapeake. The only test I've completed was to move the rudder lateraly (side-side)...which it moves 3/4"-1". It is a 1988 model year.
I don't know the yards in your area, but I'm sure there are few that cater to the race crowd and have replaced a lot of rudder bearings on J's. I'd talk with them about their experience, costs and preferred bearing vendor. If you have the original bearings in your boat, then they are most likely are the Harkens and the lower one will need to be replaced.

Paul L
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Old 01-14-2009
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When I looked at my J/34c before I bought it, the bearings were junk. The owner replaced the bearings before I purchased, and he had Jefa bearings installed. I am pleased with the operation of the bearings, but am not very pleased with the installation. The guy that did the installation did not know what he was doing and the lower bearing hangs out by about 1/4". He also glassed them to the stock. I talked to PYI, Phil I think is who I talked to, and he was very helpful in makeing sure how my bearings were installed would work ok. It is a pretty big job as you have to drop the rudder (duh!) and then fit the bearings to the stock. Also, you should repack the stuffing box around the rudder stock. It is not a cheap fix, but done correctly, should be a one time job. Keep us posted.
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